20 Quotes That Describe What It's Like To Have A Panic Attack

panic attack quote

"Try not to panic." This is probably the worst phrase someone can say to you when you're already in the middle of a severe panic attack.

Nobody quite understands what it is like to suffer from an anxiety or panic disorder unless they have experienced it themselves. From the shortness of breathe, the racing heart, sweaty palms, and severe nausea, having a panic attack is no walk in the park.

RELATED: What You Should (& Should Not) Do When Someone You Love Is Having A Panic Attack

Those who deal with panic attacks on a daily basis are strong individuals. Trust me, they have heard it all and no, they just can't stop feeling anxious. If you see someone panicking on public transportation or in a crowded store, don't just stare at them or make remarks. If they are alone, ask how you can help or escort them outside. Give a stranger a shoulder to lean on if need be.

Anxiety and panic disorders are normal and more people suffer from them than you may think. There are a lot of people who silently suffer from anxiety and sometimes all they need is someone who is willing to listen, without judgment.

If you are reading this and suffer from anxiety, a panic disorder, depression, or any other mental illness: You are NOT alone. If you are out in public and start to feel panicked or anxious, know that there is probably someone else around you going through the same thing.

Hopefully, these quotes about what a panic attack feels like resonate with you on some level.

1. When someone tells you to just calm down

“In my experience, the words “now just calm down” almost inevitably have the opposite effect on the person you are speaking to.” — Elyn R. Saks

2. Feeling like everyone thinks your overreacting

“They don’t know better. I usually just smile and let it slide. Maybe someday they’ll get it, though for their sake, I usually hope not.” — Unknown

3. Mid panic when someone tells you it's not that big of a deal

“It’s disrespectful, in my opinion, when people talk about panic attacks as if they’re just a slight hiccup.” — Unknown

4. Trying to think of underlying reasons why you might be panicking

“It’s really sad how one day I’ll seem to have everything going right then the next day I’ll lose everything so fast.” — Unknown

5. When you sense people staring at you in the middle of your panic attack

“Don’t assume I’m weak because I have panic attacks. You’ll never know the amount of strength it takes to face the world every day.” — Unknown

RELATED: How To Stop A Panic Attack Before It Begins

6. Not being able to find the words to explain your anxiety to a stranger

“Just because I can’t explain the feelings causing my anxiety, doesn’t make them less valid.” — Lauren Elizabeth

7. Trying to push past the anxiety and not let the panic attack show through

“I am exhausted from trying to be stronger than I feel.” — Unknown

8. When you're out in public and are suspicious as to why you don't feel anxious (because you always do)

“Confession: Sometimes I get anxious because I don’t feel anxious. Which means I forgot what I was supposed to feel anxious about in the first place and that gives me anxiety.” — Unknown

9. Being out in public and starting to panic, even though you know there's no real threat to your surroundings

“This is one of the most frustrating things about having an anxiety disorder; Knowing as you’re freaking out that there’s no reason to be freaked out, but lacking the ability to shut the emotion down.” — Unknown

10. When you decide to go back home because the panic is starting to take control

“It’s sad, actually, because my anxiety keeps me from enjoying things as much as I should at this age.” — Amanda Seyfried

11. When you feel guilty for having to leave a restaurant or a party because of your anxiety

“I don’t think anyone could ever criticize me more severely than the way I viciously criticize myself.” — Unknown

12. When someone tells you that you don't seem like an anxious person

"Not all wounds are visible." — Unknown

13. When you're on a plane or a long bus ride and your mind starts to think of what could go wrong

"Focus on how far you've come, not how far you have to go." — Unknown

14. Explaining your anxiety to someone who doesn't understand what you're going through

"Let's just say, my anxieties have anxieties." — Unknown

15. The reality of having an anxiety or panic disorder

"I've got 99 problems and 86 of them are completely made up scenarios in my head that I'm stressing about for absolutely no logical reason." — Unknown

RELATED: I'm Writing This During A Panic Attack So You Know You're Not Alone

16. When you're so used to having panic attacks in public

"Keep calm, it's only another panic attack." — Unknown

17. When you desperately want to find a friend who understands your anxiety

"Sometimes, when I say "I'm fine," I want someone to look me in the eyes and say,"tell me the truth." — Unknown

18. Finally finding a friend who understands what you are going through

"I need you to love me a little bit harder today." — Unknown

19. When you finally get home and realize everything you accomplished that day

"You've been doing a great job considering all you've been up against." — Unknown

20. Finally, the feeling of calm after a long day of battling your panic disorder

"No issues today. I'm in my awesome bubble and you're not allowed inside." — Unknown

Carlie Fox is a writer who covers astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.